Those intimately familiar with the buildings in and around Gowanus have surely passed the above nondescript two-story affair on the southwest corner of Butler and Nevins Streets, abutting the Canal’s northern terminus. Even if you happened to take the time to stop and check it out, you could’ve easily missed the discrete signage announcing the building’s current purpose: the home of Brooklyn’s Bridgerunners Motorcycle Club.
The building housing the club was built as the Gowanus Station of the City of New York’s Water Supply Distribution system; its one-time role in the city’s water distribution is unclear (The Gowanus Station is not mentioned in NYC’s official history of the system, although it’s possible this particular one wasn’t used for drinking water).
The building may or may not be “19th century industrial architecture” according to the doofus in the below Curbed video who comes to the poorly-researched conclusion that the Bridgerunners are “some kind of running club”:
The Bridgerunners Motorcycle Club took residence in the building in 1993, a year after their formation on Walcott Street in Red Hook. According to the BRMC website, ”It’s [sic] members are dedicated to brotherhood, respect and the art of motorcycle riding.” Here’s a picture of the BMRC taken in Red Hook from back in 1992 [via the BMRC Facebook page]:
And some modern day shots, also from Facebook, taken at the BRMC’s 20th anniversary block party this past summer:
And a few more from the official BRMC website:
One of the things we love about Gowanus is the variety of people attracted to its swampy environs. It’ll be a shame when the tide of gentrification takes hold en masse and forces out gritty New Yorkers like the members of Bridgerunners, who staked their claim here 20 years ago.